Councillor claims badgers could be culled in car parks

  • 9 October 2012
  • From the section England
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Councillor Eddie Gaines
Councillor Eddie Gaines says badgers could be shot in public car parks when the pilot gets underway

A Somerset councillor claims badgers could be shot in public car parks when the pilot culls get underway.

The comments were made by Councillor Eddie Gaines, an Independent on Taunton Deane Borough Council.

He and his colleagues had just been debating a motion to ban badger culling on council-owned land.

This followed a recent decision by Forest of Dean District Council to implement just such a ban.

Both councils are in areas generally earmarked for the two pilot culls.

Taunton Deane rejected the motion. And the whole exercise seemed rather academic anyway, given that the council doesn't own much in the way of farmland.

Unsurprisingly for a district council, it is big on things like housing estates - and car parks.

Our interview with Cllr Gaines (in a council car park) produced his rather surprising comments.

Culling guidance

Defra, however, tell me that "shooting in a car park will not be an option".

A spokesman said: "Clear guidance has been provided about the need for any culling activity to take place in a suitable location away from dwellings and urban locations, or anywhere where there is a risk of injury to people."

You can read Natural England's guidance on the Defra website.

Quite apart from the specific rules for badger culling, the criminal law has a lot to say about people who carry - let alone discharge - firearms in a public place.

Suffice to say it is not remotely encouraging and includes talk of prison sentences.